How Do You Add Someone to Your Chat List on Facebook?

By C.D. Crowder

Never miss your best friends online with a custom chat list.
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If you've already created friend lists on Facebook, take them one step further by incorporating these lists into the chat feature. Using lists with the chat feature organizes your friends so you quickly see when your closest contacts are online. When you add a new friend on Facebook, it only takes a few steps to add that friend to a new or existing friend list.

Add Friend to List

Start by adding the friend to a friend list. By default, Facebook has three friend lists, but you are able to create as many as you want to organize friends, family and co-workers. The default lists include Close Friends, Acquaintances and Restricted. Add a friend to a list by visiting his profile, clicking “Friends” on his cover photo and choose “Add to another list.” All your lists are on your Facebook news feed page in the sidebar under "Friends."

Add List to Chat

After you add the friend to a list, open chat and click the gear settings icon at the bottom of the chat sidebar. Choose “Advanced Settings” and select “Turn on chat for only some friends.” Enter the name of the list or lists you want added to chat. You can also exclude lists by choosing “Turn on chat for all friends except” and entering the list names.

Why Use Friend Lists

If you don't use friend lists, all the friends you frequently interact or chat with who also have chat turned on are listed. If you have numerous friends who use chat, the list of contacts becomes unmanageable. Using lists allows you to see only the friends you are most interested in chatting with. Changing the settings allows you to choose which lists you see at any given time. Friends not on these included lists do not see you online, so you're free to chat without interruptions from others.

Do Friends Know

Friends never know when you add them to a list. They'll never know whether you've included or excluded them from chat. Excluded friends won't see you listed as available to chat and will never know why. Friend lists are completely private.

Friends Not On Lists

If you want to chat with a specific friend who isn't on a list, you don't have to change your settings just to chat with him. Enter the friend's name in the search box at the bottom of the chat sidebar. The icon is grayed out by default, but clicking the name opens a new chat session with the person. Chatting with a friend not on a friend list does not change your chat status to anyone else excluded from chat.

Frequent Chat

Unless you use friend lists in chat, the only other way to add someone to chat is to interact with him frequently on Facebook. Using friend lists is a much faster way to add someone. Interacting includes commenting, messaging, liking and even searching for the friend on chat and chatting. You can chat with someone at any time your friend has chat enabled and is available by searching for his name in the chat sidebar.